DENNISON -- Harcatus Tri-County CAO Family Support Centers are currently assisting low income households who are having difficulty heating their homes.

Since Nov. 1, 2011, the Family Support offices in Harrison, Carroll and Tuscarawas counties have processed approximately 1,700 applications for emergency heating assistance, nearly 1,000 less than were processed in 2011 for the same time period. The lower number is primarily due to the success of the new Percent of Income Payment Plan Plus (PIPP Plus) that allows lower income household maintain gas and electric service by paying a percentage of their monthly household income instead of their actual emergency bills. PIPP Plus, which officially began on Nov. 1, 2011, makes monthly payments more affordable on a year-round basis. Participating companies in Harrison, Carroll and Tuscarawas counties include Dominion East Ohio Gas, American Electric Power and Columbia Gas of Ohio.

The HEAP Winter Crisis Program ends on March 31. Emergency assistance may be provided to income eligible households only once during the winter heating season.

For information, call 330-343-8770.